Recreating What’s Destroyed: How Displaced Syrians Rebuild the Past

Mahmoud Hariri recreates a model of Palmyra using clay and wooden kebab skewers. Photo: Christopher Herwig.
Mahmoud Hariri recreates a model of Palmyra using clay and wooden kebab skewers. Photo: Christopher Herwig.

Even before peace can even be imagined in Syria, there are already plans underway to renovate antiquities destroyed by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levent when they took control of the central Syria in 2015. The United Nations and UNESCO have both pledged support to reconstruct Palmyra, an important site of ruins dating back to two thousand years BC. But while war rages on, Syrians in Za’atari refugee camp begin reconstruction on a much smaller scale. read more

Akram Abu al-Fawz Repurposes Syria’s War Weaponry Into Art Objects

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It is estimated that more that a quarter of a million people have died, and eleven million are displaced in what is now five years of civil war in Syria with no end in sight. With the well-documented dispossession and death, however, comes creative reinterpretation of the war-torn landscape and the deadly weapons that deliver this destruction. Artist Akram Abu al-Fawz collects remnants of weaponry and transforms them into objects of art, adorning them with arabesque motifs and perhaps re-rendering them in motifs that immobilize their destructive meaning. read more

An Animated Portrayal of Life Played Out on a Bullet Timeline by Filmmaker Khaled Abdulwahed

Syrian-born Kkaled Abdulwahed comes from a graphic design communications background, but has created striking video pieces that look directly at life through the lens of war. This piece, Bullet, combines hand-drawn animation with graffiti and uses a bullet-symbol as a timeline projectile traveling through life impacting people, facilitating authority and power, and finally bringing with it, death. The heart, a common icon of social positiveness and well-being, and butterflies, symbols of childhood innocence, are defended and defeated as the bullet glides through this narrative, now three years old and still completely relevant. read more

Creative Memory of the Syrian Revolution — Witnessing Revolution Through Art

Revolution Continues
One day, we will cover the Earth with roses, The Revolutionary Movement Team in southern Damascus

The website, Creative Memory of the Syrian Revolution, is a comprehensive  database of art produced by Syrians in the wake of the ongoing war-revolution. The producers of the site note that the war, now in its sixth year, has unleashed an astonishing wave of artistic expression that communicates the challenges to Syrians, its political and cultural upheavals, not to mention the ever-present threat to life and livelihood. read more